Driven by Faith
Oct 29, 2018
In several stories of Jesus’ life, he heals blind men. Today’s story of Bartimaeus is rather straight forward. Bartimaeus knows that Jesus can heal him, so as he becomes aware that Jesus is near he begins calling out to him: “Son of David have pity on me”. Jesus summons him and heals him, telling him that it was his faith that brought this about. In another story in the Gospel of John Jesus encounters the man born blind who has no knowledge of who Jesus is or what Jesus can do for him. It begins with the disciples asking Jesus if it was his sin or his parent’s sins that caused the man to be born blind. Jesus tells them that it is neither, but instead, the man was born blind so that God may be glorified. Jesus spits and makes mud and rubs it in the man’s eyes telling him to wash it off in the pool of Siloam. Once he does this, the man can see. When others notice that he could now see, they begin to question the man as to how this happened. He did not have a very clear answer. Jesus comes back to him to reveal that it was he who brought this healing about.
Driven by a faith that understands the power of God, Bartimaeus is actively seeking out what he knows God can do for him. At the same time, God does his work even for people who do not believe. The healing of the man born blind is brought about so that God can reveal his power. God is not limited by our lack of faith. The only time Jesus is limited in doing miracles is when people are actively displaying a lack of faith in him. (Remember the time Jesus goes back to his home town.)
In our present age we can either be open to the possibility of God’s actions in our daily life and celebrate as we see our faith bringing about God’s manifestation or we can allow ourselves to be surprised by a God who is still actively at work in our world. Either way the more we can speak to those experiences the more we are evangelizing about a God who actively loves us. The world needs this good news and we as a faith community will only grow stronger for this work.